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Emirates medical training

The medical training that Emirates<.> provides for its cabin crew and ground staff has been awarded full accreditation to…

The medical training that Emirates<.> provides for its cabin crew and ground staff has been awarded full accreditation to the prestigious Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. Emirates is the first and only airline in the world to receive such accreditation.

Emirates` Corporate Occupational Health Training Unit (COHTU), provides medical training to the whole Emirates Group, including ground staff and cabin crew.

Professor Brian Steggles, Chairman of the Faculty of Pre-Hospital Care, Royal College of Surgeons, said: We were delighted and most impressed with the whole of the Emirates First Aid Training set-up and the thoroughness with which they train and examine their staff. In our view, they have set the gold standard.

For passengers, the accreditation means the assurance that they are in the care of staff who have been recognised by one of the oldest medical centres of excellence in the world as being able to train and maintain First Aid proficiency to an extremely high standard.

First Aid certificates issued in future to all cabin crew and ground staff who complete their courses satisfactorily will bear the seal of the Royal College.

The Royal College will regularly review Emirates medical training to ensure that the standards that have been achieved are maintained. Passengers therefore have the added assurance that the airline will continue to work with the Royal College to regularly update courses and pass on to staff the advances the Royal College recommends.

Accreditation has been achieved by the quality of the trainers themselves; their skill in providing training; the quality of the courses and the depth into which they go; the emphasis on practical training in realistic scenarios in the cabin mock-ups; and Emirates` insistence that each trainee reaches a very high level in theoretical and practical examinations.

The COHTU, based in the Emirates Training College, comprises eight trainers led by Roisin Wadding. The others are: Katherine McLaughlin, Catherine Oueijan, Deirdre Ingram and Kelli Butler, all COHTU Superintendents; plus Charmaine Timney, Tarja Korpi and Ozgur Toprak, Occupational Health Instructors. Medical supervision is provided by Dr Alasdair Beatton, Emirates` Head of Medical Services.

Dr Beatton said: We applied to the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh for accreditation because we wanted to ensure that our First Aid training met with the best international standards. In addition, we wanted to set up a system whereby those standards would be independently monitored on a regular basis so that the benefits would be passed on to our passengers.

Praising the staff of the COHTU, Dr Beatton said: The whole team of full and part-time trainers, past and present, have made this accreditation possible through their dedication, enthusiasm and determination never to accept anything but the best. This is their achievement.

In 1998, Emirates became one of a handful of airlines to equip each aircraft with a defibrillator. Cabin crew have so far saved the lives of two passengers.

The same year, Emirates became the first airline in the Middle East to sign up with MedLink, an Emergency Telemedicine Centre based at a hospital in Phoenix, USA. When medical emergencies occur in flight, cabin and flight crew can phone in to the MedLink emergency centre from anywhere in the world via satellite communications lines that are available on every Emirates aircraft.

Dr Beatton commented: The proficiency of our cabin crew in dealing with inflight emergencies means that, in fact, we make very few calls to MedLink. They have said that, as a result, when a call comes in from an Emirates aircraft they take it very seriously indeed because they know how well the crew have been trained.

This year, in response to mounting concern about deep vein thrombosis (DVT), Emirates became the first airline in the world to offer passengers the Airogym, a simple but effective exercise device which can be used while sitting in an airline seat.

Theodore Koumelis
Co-Founder & Managing Director - Travel Media Applications | Website

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.